In a 2011 Conference breakout session, Tony Melvyn of OCLC spoke about how you can start to offer interlibrary loan to your patrons using WorldCat Resource Sharing. Here are the slides of his presentation.
You begin by obtaining a good-faith quote based on your best guess as to how many borrows you expect to perform through the OCLC service. Pay this quote to cover your first year's subscription to the ILL service platform. There may also be borrowing charges for items you borrow if the lending library charges your library.
After you've been using WorldCat Resource Sharing for a year and it's time to renew your subscription, your renewal rate will be recalculated based on the level of activity during the previous year. If you estimated that you would borrow 200 times in the first year but you did 5000 instead, you would not be charged to make up the difference in your first year's underestimate, but you would see your cost for renewing go up (or down) to match the reality of your level of activity.
After subscribing to WorldCat Resource Sharing and getting a symbol, you can join the Tenn-Share OCLC ILL Group.
If you want to participate in lending to other libraries, you need to have your holdings in OCLC. You can batch load your holdings by extracting ISBNs (and other data) from your catalog into a spreadsheet and sending them to OCLC. This is a free benefit with either a full cataloging subscription or a CatExpress subscription and requires a commitment to keep your holdings up to date with one of these services.
Finally, to have your catalog searchable with the WorldCat interface along with other Tennessee library catalogs, you would join our Tenn-Share subscription to FirstSearch Base Package and configure your WorldCat Local Quick Start. It is probably cheaper (and better) than upgrading your catalog software to get all the goodies of a "next-gen" catalog (link retrieves Marshall Breeding's presentation slides from 2010 Conference), such as faceting search results, cover images, reviews, user tags, etc.
To sum up:
1. Obtain a good-faith quote for your first year's subscription to WorldCat Resource Sharing, call either Rosanna O’Neil at 800-848-5878, x4067, or Alisa Whitt, x4069, and tell them you are in the Tenn-Share group and would like a quote for WorldCat Resource Sharing. You will need to be prepared with contact information and the number of anticipated borrows per year.
2. The subscription will be set up and your billing will start the following month. Once the subscription is active, fill out the forms, etc. to set up your profile on OCLC to become a borrower.
3. The OCLC Training Portal offers free training programs you can watch at your convenience for how to do an ILL borrower request. (Non-OCLC training programs that aren't free are also on that site, but it will indicate which ones are free and which ones cost.). There is also extensive documentation, including guides and tutorials at the WorldCat Resource Sharing website.
4. Send Melissa Brenneman (mbrenneman [at] knoxlib [dot] org) your OCLC symbol when you want to be included in the OCLC ILL Group. (Please remember to identify your library in your email.)
***---Stop here and you're a borrower on OCLC.---***
5. To start lending, contact Rosanna O’Neil who can also assist you with pricing for OCLC cataloging which will qualify you for your free batch load.
6. To get a "next-gen" interface for your catalog, join the WorldCat subscription group through Tenn-Share and configure the WorldCat Local Quick Start.
If you do only the first four steps, you'll be able to borrow on OCLC at a low cost. Combined with the Tenn-Share courier service, you will be providing interlibrary loans faster, cheaper, and easier than you ever thought possible.